So, I've been thinking a lot about eternity lately, and what's politically correct to say about it. I want to start with the Corinthians. In fact, let's start with I Corinthians, chapter 15, verse 35, and read to verse 49; then I want to move to II Corinthians, chapter 5, starting with verse 1, through to verse 10. Go ahead, go read those passages. Don't worry, I'll wait here for you, just let me know when you're finished.
Weren't those amazing? I find that in today's environment, it's a little unpopular to talk about the afterlife. Who wants to hear that a terrible situation may not come to an end before you die? That you just might have to live with it. A lot of things I heard, well, they beg the question: is God a god of Good and Bad, or is he just Good? We like to think that he's just a loving and good God, that we would spare us harm if he could. How terrifying would that be? I mean, would you rather a God who was just a god of good things, and had no power over bad things? Would you have faith in a God like that? Or would you rather recognize that even the things we see as bad are the tools of a loving God in the end? I heard by an old pastor of mine that God was more interested in character than comfort. So, if I get into a car accident and become paralyzed from the waist down, who's to blame for such a "bad" thing? Satan? Demons? How about God? Considering that God is making it so he has to live with me, and not just him, but a bunch of people he cares about, for the next thousand, million, billion, trillion years, wouldn't it be more important for me to be worth living with for all that time? Isn't a happy nation of people for a quintillion years more important than a miserable man for thirty years? Imagine if I never learned the lessons that accident ended up being responsible for teaching me, things like long-suffering, patience, compassion, and went on to eternity. Don't you think that at some point in the next million years, my impatience and callousness would at the very least irritate someone? That's not paradise.
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All this being said, are we to deny the hope we look forward to, in the resurrected body? The whole point to the DiversAbilities project is to recognize the value of the person living with those DiversAbilities, and perhaps even acknowledge the source of strength those DiversAbilities can sometimes provide us. But is it so wrong to recognize that once our bodies are resurrected, they will be made new and be made whole? As much as we use these DiversAbilities as badges of honor, we have to acknowledge that they are a result of living in a world where sin has entered and brought death with it, including all the little defects that that entails. We should also celebrate, look forward to, and hope for, a world where sin is erased, death is erased, and all the terrible things that those things bring with them are erased, including any DiversAbilities. There is nothing wrong with my wife looking forward to an afterlife where she'll be able to walk, hand in hand, with Jesus. It does not diminish how great a person she is, it does not cheapen the things of value living her life has brought her. If anything, it celebrates her ability to live out the lessons she's learned here, and enjoy the freedom of full ability she'll have access to there.
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